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Aug 20, 2019

Miniscript Is Making Bitcoin Programming Easier » Bitcoin Magazine

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Bitcoin offered the first smart contract programming language the world had ever seen. Script, as this language is called, lets users encode different conditions under which coins can be spent. But while this was a revolutionary concept, it’s not easy to use, especially for more complex spending conditions. Both writing a complex contract as well as verifying that the contract does what it is supposed to do are prone to human error. Yet, especially with money at stake, correct interpretation of the conditions is of the utmost importance.

Over the past year, three blockchain engineers have set out to improve this. By stripping down Script to its bare essentials, their “new” programming language — “Miniscript” — abstracts away the complexity and should make programming on Bitcoin easier and safer for everyone involved.

“Miniscript is, in a theoretical sense, more limiting than script,” Blockstream director of research and Miniscript co-designer Andrew Poelstra told Bitcoin Magazine. “But it can do everything that people actually use script for.”

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